Apple to open Phoenix-area plant, employ 700

POSTED: 03:08 PM PST Nov 04, 2013 
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PHOENIX, Ariz. -

Tech giant Apple says it will open a manufacturing plant in the Phoenix suburb of Mesa and eventually employ 700 workers.

The Cupertino, Calif., maker of the iPhone confirmed Monday that it is expanding its U.S. manufacturing operations in a former First Solar plant in Mesa. The city southeast of Phoenix already hosts a long list of high-tech manufacturing firms.

About 1,300 construction jobs will also be created as the First Solar plant designed to make thin-film solar panels is converted.  The company sold the plant last month.

Apple spokeswoman Kristen Huguet says the plant will be powered with renewable energy provided by local utility Salt River Project.

Gov. Jan Brewer said Apple's decision is a sign that the Arizona's efforts to provide a pro-business climate are paying off.